Greece will achieve a primary surplus of 3.3 percent of GDP in 2016, smashing an initial forecast of 0.1 percent, the International Monetary Fund said on Wednesday in its fiscal monitor report.
However, in 2017 the primary surplus will decrease to 1.7 percent of GDP, slightly below a target of 1.75 percent for this year set out in the country’s bailout program.
The report also said the country will not meet its primary surplus target of 3.5 percent in 2018, and is expected instead to achieve a 2 percent of GDP (revised from an initial forecast for 1.5 pct last October). From 2019 to 2022, the Greek budget will record surpluses of just 1.5 percent, it added.
Concerning Greek pubic debt, the IMF report foresees it will continue to rise up until 2018, when it is expected to reach 181.5 percent of GDP, from 180.7 percent in 2017, lower than the initial forecast last October for 2017 for 184.7 percent of GDP.
In 2016, debt is expected to have reached 181.3 percent of GDP. The debt is forecast to start declining from 2019 to 174.3 percent to reach 162.8 percent of GDP in 2022.
The Fund stressed that these forecasts presuppose the full and rigorous implementation of the European Stability Mechanism’s adjustment program by Greece. It also said the estimations are based on preliminary data recorded on February 15 and may be revised after the final figures that will be published by Eurostat on April 21.